About Us: Shining Brightly at Golightly
Golightly Education Center, a PreK-8 school nestled in the heart of the Midtown cultural district, is serious about providing each child with a rigorous college-preparatory education presented by dedicated and committed teachers in a setting that has a private school presence.
Golightly, which requires an application for entry* and a minimum grade point average, has a reputation for offering quality education for more than 60 years.
Application: Golightly Education Center Application
Brochure: Golightly Brochure
Heavy writing assignments, like mini-dissertations, are incorporated into practically every lesson. If a student goes on a field trip, they come back and write about it. At the end of each lesson, they write about what they’ve learned. And they are taught, just as they would experience in college or a career, that writing is a process, Hobbs said. That means that they are encouraged to write drafts, edit them and rewrite them before their final, “published” product.
The motto of the school is Shining Brightly at Golightly, and the school invokes a college bound culture and a collegiate mindset among staff and students at every turn. That begins in preschool where the school offers the High Scope curriculum. Students can also participate in Honors classes if they demonstrate high scholastic achievement combined with excellent citizenship.
Golightly also works hard to make use of its well-situated location in the heart of Midtown and within walking distance of the city’s cultural center. Field trips are frequent to the Charles Wright Museum of African American History, The Detroit Institute of Arts, Wayne State University, The Detroit Public Library’s main branch and more.
Community and university partnerships abound at the school, including those with Michigan State University, Detroit Renewable Energy, Wayne State University, University of Michigan, Action Photo, Hartford Memorial Church, law firms and more.
Thanks to Target Corp. volunteers and the Heart of America Foundation, the school has a bright, cheery newly-renovated library stacked with more than 2,000 books, eco-friendly design features, technological upgrades including iPads, and colorful new furniture, shelving and carpet. To support parents, the parent group holds workshops and parent meetings in the school’s brand new Parent Café where parents come to receive parenting support and learn new strategies that help with raising children along with some helpful ideas that can assist them with understanding their child’s most challenging homework assignments. New this fall, The S.W.I.S.S. club (Single Women Initiating Successful Sons) a support group, will begin for women who struggle with raising boys in a single family home.
Data Driven to excel
Each student has an Individual Learning Plan, and students are systematically given the responsibility to understand how their personal data affects their academic achievement and are monitored to help them with meaningful ways to improve. Teachers work with a system called DataDirector to track students’ progress. The MiStar system is used to keep parents updated with tests, quizzes, projects and class assignments.
Offerings and extra-curricular experiences
Golightly Education Center believes in educating the whole child and providing rich experiences. The school provides an academic-based Physical Education program, where students learn to bowl, play volleyball, golf, floor hockey, football, cheerleading and basketball. FREE Intramural and Interscholastic sports programs are offered. Uniforms are provided.
Field trips to law offices; hospitals, Career Day and field to school experiences are provided for students to expose them to professional business opportunities to consider.
Other offerings include:
- College readiness classes in 5th grade to prepare students for the ACT and SAT
- Academic games
- National Junior Honor Society
- Doctors Inc Program (Distinguished Responsible Scholars who Initiate a Need for Change)
- Accelerated Reading
- National Beta Club
- Gear Up;
- Urban Gardening
- STEP Club and Dance Team
- Vocal and Instrumental Music at Spain Elementary-Middle School in connection with a NEW program joining the Midtown Schools of Excellence
- New Early Learning Neighborhood Center site for preschool students
- Education to Life Program
- Future City, Science Fair and a Science Laboratory
- Golf/Math Program
- Free Tutoring
- Chess Club
- Newspaper Club
*Golightly also accepts 15 percent of its student body from the immediate neighborhood.
School of the Week: Golightly Educationn Center – A Unique School to Foster Children’s Dreams and Goals and Make Them Come True
Posted on March 4, 2013
When Dr. Sherrell Hobbs of Golightly Education Center starts talking quickly about a dissertation in the halls of her Midtown school, she likely is not talking about her own doctoral thesis, but instead one of the hundreds of dissertations that she requires from her students.
Golightly’s mini-dissertation, which in an in-depth writing exercise on a lesson, is just one of the many tools Hobbs uses to create a college bound culture and a collegiate mindset among staff, pushing her 504 “scholars” to excel.
“When children come here, they find themselves learning what their goals, dreams and aspirations are because we help them be creative in their own choices,” Hobbs said.
Golightly Education Center, an application school which also accepts a percentage of students from its immediate neighborhood, has a storied history of innovating educational practices. Originally named Balch School, Golightly was the first city elementary school built to use the “platoon teaching system” and attracted observers from around the world.
Platooning is a model in which elementary students leave their homeroom to be taught by teachers in their area of subject expertise instead of staying with one teacher all day who teaches all subjects, as is typical in many elementary schools.
Now, parents seek out the Golightly because their children, many of whom are high-achievers, have dreams to become doctors, engineers or other professionals, and Golightly overflows with different programs to help them pursue these dreams, Hobbs said.
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Experienced, Dedicated, Caring Staff
The current teaching staff members were individually selected and hired to work at the school.
To ensure students have access to needed services, Golightly also offers an Academic Engagement Administrator, counselor, psychologist, speech pathologist, instructional specialist, DHS provider, and a school nurse.
Zero Tolerance for students AND teachers
Golightly has a zero-tolerance for teachers who do not demonstrate a caring attitude of care and concern for the students that they teach. Professional development for teachers is regularly provided to explain the importance of building relationships with the students.
Students have the responsibility to honor the Student Code of Conduct. Those who do not must follow a tiered discipline process. The principal and her team employ a four-tiered disciplinary process to work with the student and parent, starting with the teacher, students and parent, then the counselor, followed by the Academic Engagement Administrator and finally, the principal herself.
After school care
Knowing the working parents may need extra care, Golightly offers a before and afterschool Fee-based latchkey Program.
Parent Engagement is key to a child’s success
Golightly offers a warm and caring environment for parents, including an open door policy with the principal. A team of parents volunteer outside and indoors to support a positive behavior atmosphere so that the school maintains a safe environment.
Parent engagement activities include Professional development that provides parenting and academic skill building, Family Game Night, GSCO Field Trips, Second Cup of Coffee, Meet the Principal, Family Game Night; Science Night; Mathematics Night; Read to your child READ-ALOUD program; seasonal student performances; award ceremonies; donor student support gift presentations and weekly ballroom and hustle dance classes.
High Quality Pre-Kindergarten
We offer a high quality early learning experience for special needs and general education students 4 years of age by November 1. Detroit Public Schools’ Pre-K classroom curriculum is aligned with the National Early Childhood Standards and Michigan State Board of Education’s Early Childhood Standards of Quality.
For more info, go to detroitk12.org/preK
Michigan State University, Detroit Renewable Energy, Wayne State University, University of Michigan, Action Photo, Hartford Memorial Church
About the Principal
Dr. Sherrell Hobbs has a track record that supports success for all! Zero-tolerance is her mantra for dealing with adverse student behavior(s). As a result, a culture of respect and tolerance compels students to flourish in a safe and productive educational environment. The supportive culture at Golightly sustains an environment that allows students to obtain their academic goals and gain entry into Detroit’s finest high schools. Emphasis is placed upon the instructional staff to operate with a data driven purpose to support students with gaining and maintaining at minimum, proficient standardized test scores.
The mission of Golightly Education Center is to improve each student’s ability to learn at a high rate of academic achievement. Technology, data analysis and progress monitoring are used to provide an accurate understanding of the developing needs of individual students. A rigorous curriculum is delivered to all of our students by 100% highly qualified teachers, to ensure that students become proficient in all content areas. This supports our goal of helping students to emerge in a 21st Century school.
We, the entire staff of Golightly Education Center hold the expectation that all students will learn and achieve high academic standards. We believe that our school’s main purpose is to educate our students and each teacher’s responsibility is to develop a caring and artistic attitude that fosters a love of learning. Through communication with the home and community support, the staff will develop a partnership that enhances positive growth in all students.
We believe that all Golightly Education Center students can and will learn. The delivery and use of relevant pedagogy is critical to meeting the needs of our diverse student body. Enrichment opportunities are sought throughout the curriculum and instructional practices to ensure educational growth and excellence in a stimulating technologically advanced school environment. Each instructional staff member must be committed to infusing creative learning opportunities to students. This is done through supporting students with differentiated instruction that seeks to understand students’ individual learning styles.
Golightly Education Center was originally named after George W. Balch. Balch School, now known as Golightly Education Center, was the first city elementary school built to use the platoon teaching system and attracted people from around the world to observe the model.
Pants/Skirts: Navy Blue, Khaki or Black.
Elementary School Shirts: Powder Blue.
Middle School Shirts: White.